Cicely Tyson Fast Facts

— Here’s a look at the life of Emmy Award-winning actress Cicely Tyson.

Personal: Birth date: December 19, 1924 (some sources say 1933)

Birth place: New York, New York

Birth name: Cicely Tyson

Father: William Tyson, carpenter and painter

Mother: Theodosia Tyson

Marriage: Miles Davis (1981-1988, divorced)

Education: Attended New York University

Other Facts: On the Dance Theatre of Harlem’s national advisory board.

Nominated for 11 Emmy Awards and has won three.

Nominated for one Academy Award.

Nominated for one Tony Award and has won one.

Worked as a typist after high school.

Timeline: 1950s – Is discovered by a fashion editor at Ebony magazine.

1956 – Appears on the cover of both Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar.

1963 – Appears as “Jane Foster” in the TV series “East Side/West Side.”

1972 – Stars in “Sounder,” winning a Golden Globe and an Academy Award nomination.

1974 – Wins Emmys for Actress of the Year – Special and Best Lead Actress in a Drama for the film, “The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman.”

January 1977 – Portrays Binta, the mother of Kunta Kinte, in the miniseries, “Roots.”

1977 – Inducted into the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame.

1981 – Marries jazz legend Miles Davis in comedian Bill Cosby’s home.

1983 – Heads to Broadway, briefly starring in “The Corn is Green.”

1994 – Wins the Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Miniseries for “Oldest Living Confederate Widow Tells All.”

1995 – The Cicely L. Tyson Community School of Performing & Fine Arts, an elementary school in East Orange, New Jersey, is named in her honor.

August 21, 1997 – Receives a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

2010 – Is awarded the NAACP Spingarn Medal.

2011 – Appears in the movie “The Help.”

March 2011 – Appears in Willow Smith’s video for the song, “21st Century Girl.”

2013 – Returns to Broadway after 30 years, winning a Tony for Best Actress in “The Trip to Bountiful.”

2015 – Receives the Kennedy Center Honors.

November 22, 2016 – In a ceremony honoring 21 Americans, Tyson is awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.